Former Celtic defender Alan Stubbs has encouraged Neil Lennon to sign a fourth striker in January to add to his options.
So far this season, only Odsonne Edouard has managed to impress. Overall, the Frenchman has managed to bag 15 goals and 13 assists, whilst our second-choice striker Leigh Griffiths is only on three goals and one assist (Transfermarkt). Granted, much of that has been down to injury problems, but that hasn’t helped Lenny’s options.
Vakoun Bayo, meanwhile, is another who just hasn’t been able to stay fit. It’s left Edouard as the only viable option, with Lenny forced into playing Lewis Morgan up top in crucial matches whenever Eddy has picked up a knock.
Stubbs believes the current situation, therefore, leads to another striker being a “necessity” in January. Speaking in the Scottish Sun, here’s what the former Hibs and St Mirren boss said on the matter:
“Cover for Odsonne Edouard is a necessity because we’ve all seen how important he is for the team and when he’s not in the team. Celtic miss him.
“It would be exactly the same for Rangers and Alfredo Morelos. Even though they’ve got Jermain Defoe, I still think Morelos gives Rangers another dimension.
“So I can see a striker and another wide player as cover. Because the squad is stronger, they really are being quite specific now on what type of player they want.”
Lenny already making moves to bolster
It’s quite clear now that Lenny is of the same opinion as Stubbs. Only yesterday did he open up on the Andraz Sporar links, as he claimed Celtic have indeed started talks with Slovan Bratislava (BBC).
Last week when he initially touched on the Sporar links, the manager said that the club were looking at “a number” of options up top this January (Scottish Sun).
It’s an extremely intriguing situation we find ourselves in up top. Edouard we know is golden and won’t be dropped for anyone. He’s in a dream place just now in this Celtic squad, and is one of the undroppables.
Yet Griffiths’ situation is much different. We all know the quality he possesses. He’s been at the club for nearly six years, and has been a constant goalscorer throughout that run. In the campaign of 2015/16, he even managed 40 in one season. We know if we can get him back up to speed then he can be the number two to Odsonne.
Lennon has even given Griffiths his backing too. He isn’t interested in letting him leave even temporarily in January (Daily Record), and that shows the manager is of the same opinion on the Scotland international.
That moves us onto Bayo, who just hasn’t made any sort of impact. We stated yesterday that we believed a loan move would be best for him. It just doesn’t make sense to have four forwards for a one-striker system. He’s best placed to be the man to depart if we are to make room for another striker.
All it does is make January more exciting. Is Lenny really going to try and push ahead with four front-men? He’ll have some job trying to keep them all happy. Regardless, Stubbs doesn’t need to worry about another forward coming in, the manager is already on it.